Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Debate Competitions : Fun Yet Tiring!

Debate competitions are so tiring!  Yet I enjoy them so much. Thrilling exhaustion...It's an oxymoron, I know.

This year, my school was assigned the task of hosting the Kota Kinabalu Student English Language Debate District Level for 2013.  We spent the last two months in meetings and preparations.  Also some bickering and elbowing.. but hey, what's a big event without some conflict?  The guy in charge, Eric C had to deal with some putting out of fires but he's good at doing that, so why not?

In the end, everything turned out right. 

The speakers and timekeepers were primed and trained to do their work according to the rules and regulations.  Although one or two stuck to their scripts like Nazi commandants and refused to deviate from the prepared list of names.  One of my friends Audrey J was introduced as Dayang Nurul (something like that) and she found that amusing.  We also had a debater who didn't wait to be invited to speak.  Luckily I was one of the judges on duty at that time, so when the startled chairperson stared at me with big eyes, I just gestured for her to let things be.  And I'm so glad that I shared debate horror stories with them, for in one room, a stopwatch actually stopped (as has happened in past history).  The smart girl had her backup timepiece to continue the count.

The rooms were set up, although we had to exile two whole forms to the hall for a whole morning and may probably have to lavish some TLC on the counsellors.  Cheesecake should do the job.  My class (recalcitrant hardheaded but lovable Science geeks!) had to do a thorough cleaning of their room and I found it dismaying that the thought of All Saints or Lok Yuk students staring at their mess (one hour quarantine) could make them budge where my months of haranguing didn't work. 

The registrations went well... and all it took were a gaggle of ushers (students with labels on lanyards), teachers with forms and foghorn voices.  And labels and maps and signs.

Let's not talk about the admin part.. letters, speeches etc.  And of course, the best part were the debates themselves ;)


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